New Life Resolution: Try Something Hard

Photographer: Sweat RX
Reebok CrossFit Open

New Year’s Life Resolution: Try Something Hard

(Like signing up for the CrossFit Open!)

By Jen Young

It’s that time again, folks! The CrossFit Games Open qualifiers start this week, and I think you should sign up. It’s just five workouts (which will probably be part of your gym’s programming anyway), completed from the comfort of your own box (where you’ll probably be already), and you’ll get to see how you rank next to every other CrossFitter in the Whole World (you know you’re just a little bit curious). Besides, all the cool kids are doing it.Don’t you want to be a cool kid?

In all seriousness though, to me the Open is so much more than just finding the next Rich Froning or seeing how you rank (or being a cool kid). Anyone can sign up, and everyone will get something out of it no matter their level, because the Open is a chance for us to challenge ourselves in a way that our regularly scheduled WOD cannot.

Maybe you think there’s no way. You’re not fit enough, you rarely do the workout prescribed, and you’re typically last to finish the WOD at your box.

That’s exactly how I felt, as a brand new CrossFitter, when the 2011 Open rolled around.

In a fit of temporary insanity I signed up anyway, with no idea whether or not I’d be able do the workouts Rx, and with the lofty goal of getting to the end with one point in each WOD. The detailed play-by-play can be found here ( but *SPOILER ALERT* I somehow managed to achieve this goal, and far, far more than that.

If you sign up you will push yourself, and realize that you didn’t know what that meant until now. There may be movements you can’t complete. Try anyway. Worst case, you spend 17 minutes practicing toes to bar (that’s what I did, and I got my first two!). But even if you still don’t get it by the end of the WOD, and you finish the competition in 10,439th place, big whoop(I ended up 4th last in the Region, it wasn’t so bad!). You’ll certainly be further ahead than you were before you tried, and your fellow CrossFitters will always be there to commiserate, encourage, and celebrate your achievements, no matter how small.

I’m stoked to share the excitement with the next batch of beginners at my box who are putting themselves out there. I’m a bit nervous that I might not meet my own expectations for myself this year, but that’s part of the challenge of the Open.

One of our coaches at Altitude says that CrossFit works because it pushes you to that uncomfortable place, from which you can then truly grow.

So, I challenge you to sign up. I accept no excuses. Don’t resolve to sign up next year, next week, or even tomorrow. Do it now, immediately, before you have time to doubt yourself. Make yourself a little uncomfortable, and get ready to grow. If you’ve signed up already, follow along each week as I post my experience and share in the journey!

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